History Main / AppealToNature

7th May '17 1:06:37 PM Luigifan
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In politico-religious discussion by MoralGuardians, the contention often comes up that "Homosexuality is im/moral because it does/does not occur in nature." Unless (as some animists and pantheists believe) nature is a sentient entity capable of making its own decisions, these arguments are inherently meaningless and futile.

The entire fallacy of using nature to justify a moral standpoint can be clarified by pointing out that NatureIsNotNice; it's rife with disease, natural disasters, parasites, predators, murder, rape (arguably, depending on how one views certain animals' mating practices) and other ghastly things, while on the other hand, "unnatural" civilization gives people the means to behave more morally, to conceive and develop ethical philosophy, and lower the historically horrendous rates of human mortality and suffering dramatically. Those who take this position also have the convenience of questioning at what point in pursuing their natural desires (such as the hunger and procreation drives) humans' activity stops being natural and starts being artificial; this is not an easy distinction to make, as all resources and technology, no matter how sophisticated and derived from human planning and decisions, is still bound to operate according to the laws of nature.

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In politico-religious discussion by MoralGuardians, the contention often comes up that "Homosexuality is im/moral because it does/does not occur in nature." Unless (as some animists and pantheists believe) nature is a sentient entity capable of making its own decisions, these arguments are inherently meaningless and futile.

futile. (And many of these arguments are completely wrong (for instance, homosexuality ''does'' occur in nature).)

The entire fallacy of using nature to justify a moral standpoint can be clarified by pointing out that NatureIsNotNice; it's rife with disease, natural disasters, parasites, predators, murder, rape (arguably, depending on how one views certain animals' mating practices) practices[[note]]if biologists are referring to "forced copulation", they're usually speaking about rape[[/note]]), and other ghastly things, while on the other hand, "unnatural" civilization gives people the means to behave more morally, to conceive and develop ethical philosophy, and lower the historically horrendous rates of human mortality and suffering dramatically. Those who take this position also have the convenience of questioning at what point in pursuing their natural desires (such as the hunger and procreation drives) humans' activity stops being natural and starts being artificial; this is not an easy distinction to make, as all resources and technology, no matter how sophisticated and derived from human planning and decisions, is still bound to operate according to the laws of nature.
26th Feb '17 6:24:41 PM GlassCatOwl
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Added DiffLines:

** Among the products which advertise themselves as 'all-natural' and 'no added sugar' is ''sugar cane juice''.
18th Feb '17 6:21:48 AM Nakuyabi
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* In UsefulNotes/NaziGermany, propaganda glorified the "natural order" which, according to the Nazis, was that the strong should dominate the weak and that the "master race" should subjugate the "inferior" races. This worldview is illustrated in ''Disney/EducationForDeath'', in which the Nazi teacher uses the story of a fox devouring a rabbit to teach students the "lesson" that the weak ''should'' perish and the strong ''should'' kill and devour them. This argument preceded the Nazis by decades: social Darwinists (from whom the Nazis [[http://www.evolutionnews.org/2016/11/was_darwinism_b103304.html derived much of their curriculum, even though they banned Darwin's actual works]]) used the argument to justify many horrible things, like "scientific" racism and eugenics. Indeed, it even preceded Darwinism [[http://scienceblogs.com/primatediaries/2010/01/05/deconstructing-social-darwinis/ itself.]] The argument that MightMakesRight is the natural order of things goes back ''millennia''.

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* In UsefulNotes/NaziGermany, propaganda glorified the "natural order" which, according to the Nazis, was that the strong should dominate the weak and that the "master race" should subjugate the "inferior" races. This worldview is illustrated in ''Disney/EducationForDeath'', in which the Nazi teacher uses the story of a fox devouring a rabbit to teach students the "lesson" that the weak ''should'' perish and the strong ''should'' kill and devour them. This argument preceded the Nazis by decades: social Darwinists (from whom the Nazis [[http://www.evolutionnews.org/2016/11/was_darwinism_b103304.html derived much of their curriculum, even though they banned Darwin's actual works]]) recommended a ban on a few specific "primitive forms" of Darwinism]]) used the argument to justify many horrible things, like "scientific" racism and eugenics. Indeed, it even preceded Darwinism [[http://scienceblogs.com/primatediaries/2010/01/05/deconstructing-social-darwinis/ itself.]] The argument that MightMakesRight is the natural order of things goes back ''millennia''.
18th Feb '17 6:19:06 AM Nakuyabi
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* In UsefulNotes/NaziGermany, propaganda glorified the "natural order" which, according to the Nazis, was that the strong should dominate the weak and that the "master race" should subjugate the "inferior" races. This worldview is illustrated in ''Disney/EducationForDeath'', in which the Nazi teacher uses the story of a fox devouring a rabbit to teach students the "lesson" that the weak ''should'' perish and the strong ''should'' kill and devour them. This argument preceded the Nazis by decades: social Darwinists used the argument to justify many horrible things, like "scientific" racism and eugenics. Indeed, it even preceded Darwinism [[http://scienceblogs.com/primatediaries/2010/01/05/deconstructing-social-darwinis/ itself.]] The argument that MightMakesRight is the natural order of things goes back ''millennia''. The Nazis actually didn't justify themselves based on Darwinism either (Darwin's works were among those banned by the [[https://coelsblog.wordpress.com/2011/11/08/nazi-racial-ideology-was-religious-creationist-and-opposed-to-darwinism/ regime).]]

to:

* In UsefulNotes/NaziGermany, propaganda glorified the "natural order" which, according to the Nazis, was that the strong should dominate the weak and that the "master race" should subjugate the "inferior" races. This worldview is illustrated in ''Disney/EducationForDeath'', in which the Nazi teacher uses the story of a fox devouring a rabbit to teach students the "lesson" that the weak ''should'' perish and the strong ''should'' kill and devour them. This argument preceded the Nazis by decades: social Darwinists (from whom the Nazis [[http://www.evolutionnews.org/2016/11/was_darwinism_b103304.html derived much of their curriculum, even though they banned Darwin's actual works]]) used the argument to justify many horrible things, like "scientific" racism and eugenics. Indeed, it even preceded Darwinism [[http://scienceblogs.com/primatediaries/2010/01/05/deconstructing-social-darwinis/ itself.]] The argument that MightMakesRight is the natural order of things goes back ''millennia''. The Nazis actually didn't justify themselves based on Darwinism either (Darwin's works were among those banned by the [[https://coelsblog.wordpress.com/2011/11/08/nazi-racial-ideology-was-religious-creationist-and-opposed-to-darwinism/ regime).]]
30th Jan '17 12:52:41 AM BattleMaster
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* The argument in favor of the tropes MyGirlIsNotASlut and ImAManICantHelpIt. The idea is that men are supposed to impregnate as many women as they can, and thus have a ''need'' to be promiscuous, while [[AllWomenArePrudes women are supposed to be the ones that are choosy]]. Even if true biologically, that would not make it right.

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* The argument in favor of the tropes MyGirlIsNotASlut and ImAManICantHelpIt. The idea is that men are supposed to impregnate as many women as they can, and thus have a ''need'' to be promiscuous, while [[AllWomenArePrudes women are supposed to be the ones that are choosy]]. Even if true biologically, biologically (which it isn't), that would not make it right.
30th Dec '16 9:48:24 AM Smeagol17
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* In German, the word "Chemie" (literally "chemistry", but in this case a more accurate translation would be "chemicals") is often used to refer to certain food additives and basically any other substance that the speaker considers to be "unnatural". The fallacy is that, technically, water is a chemical too, and so is everything else. So if you're condemning the use of "chemicals", you are basically against every substance known to man, the healthy ones as well as the unhealthy ones. Russian has a similar phrase, "Himya s physikoi" (translated literally as chemistry with physics).

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* In German, the word "Chemie" (literally "chemistry", but in this case a more accurate translation would be "chemicals") is often used to refer to certain food additives and basically any other substance that the speaker considers to be "unnatural". The fallacy is that, technically, water is a chemical too, and so is everything else. So if you're condemning the use of "chemicals", you are basically against every substance known to man, the healthy ones as well as the unhealthy ones. Russian has a similar phrase, "Himya s physikoi" "Himya" (translated literally as chemistry with physics).chemistry, but often means "chemicals".).
23rd Dec '16 12:03:34 PM garthvader
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* In ''Film/JurassicPark'', Malcolm states that bringing back dinosaurs is bad partly because that's going against natural selection. Notably, he says this is not for any moral reason, but because they haven't been part of Earth's environment for aeons, and resurrecting them might be akin to turning rabbits loose in Australia.

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* In ''Film/JurassicPark'', Malcolm states that bringing back dinosaurs is bad partly because that's going against natural selection. Notably, he says this is not for any moral reason, but because they haven't been part of Earth's environment for aeons, and resurrecting them might be akin to turning rabbits loose in Australia.
20th Dec '16 12:41:08 PM Trueman001
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Added DiffLines:

* Many products are advertised as having "all-natural sugar" (or, equivalently, "no added sugar"), as if the human metabolism can somehow distinguish sugars by source.
4th Dec '16 8:57:05 AM PsychoGecko
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* This fallacy has been popping up in pop ethical philosophy ever since evolutionary biologists came up with a working explanation for why altruism is so widespread in nature. People introduced to this philosophy for the first time usually aren't told about how the group's natural needs thought to give rise to this altruism can also be used to justify atrocities, do not guarantee the group will develop any decent ethics, and do nothing whatsoever to define what is and isn't ethical in the first place, let alone support any ontological arguments such as whether humans develop this behavior solely by natural selection or if God influences them to do so as well.
16th Nov '16 7:57:33 AM neoYTPism
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-> ''"They used to advertise, 'If you've eaten a banana and drank some milk, you've had everything in N*Sweet.'"''\\
''"My reply was, 'You've also had everything in potassium cyanide. So what?'"''
-->-- Joe Zeff, [[Website/{{Usenet}} ASR quotes]]

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-> ''"They used to advertise, 'If you've eaten a banana and drank some milk, you've had everything ''The point is that just because something is natural doesn't mean it's safe. Lions are all-natural. So is hemlock. Next time you see "all natural" on the label, keep in N*Sweet.'"''\\
''"My reply was, 'You've also had everything in potassium cyanide. So what?'"''
mind that what's really unnatural is living past 30.''
-->-- Joe Zeff, [[Website/{{Usenet}} ASR quotes]]
Website/{{Cracked}}, in [[http://www.cracked.com/article_24352_5-natural-trends-that-could-naturally-kill-you.html this]] article.
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